The 1975


Matthew Healy of The 1975Image copyright
Getty Images

The 1975 performed their first ever festival headline slot and – as it turns out – their final gig of the year at Latitude Festival on Friday night.

Bare-chested, high-heeled and hip-thrusting throughout, singer Matty Healy was not going to pass up the chance to “get a bit preachy” on “one of the best nights of our life”.

Here are six of the more memorable moments from the charismatic front man during a career-defining set for the Wilmslow lads.

1. Humbled

In March, when they were announced to top the bill for the first time anywhere, the band trolled critics by posting a hand-written letter containing phrases like “are they big enough?”

Thousands (of mostly young women and girls) seemed to think so and gathered at the Obelisk Arena to see their crowning moment.

“We’re the 1975 and we’re headlining Latitude. This is crazy!” said the giddy singer, three songs in.

“We couldn’t be more humbled by your presence. This is already one of the best nights we’ve ever had.”

Earlier in the day one fan had described the gig at “the pinnacle” of the band’s career to date.

Matty later added: “We are not accustomed to headlining festivals yet so thanks for your help!”.

They are learning fast.

2. We stand with you

Matty, who has confessed to drug abuse in the past, clearly had a few things to get off his tattooed chest last night and begged for forgiveness early on from a broad range of people including everyone and anyone he has every offended…like, ever.

“I get a bit a bit preachy at music festivals,” he said.

“But they represent the world we want to live in. Maybe a few too many drugs but that never hurt anyone!”

He added: “I’m sorry if I ever said anything to offend anyone. I don’t want to offended anyone ever.

“My intention is to spread love and unity. Especially to those who feel marginalised.

“Like the Muslim, black and LGBT communities. We stand with you!”

He then commanded the crowd to “get compassionate”.

3. Phones down please

The 1975 talisman comes across like a skinny Robert Smith; with his painted eyes, shaggy undercut hair and forlorn love songs, all set to a Prince/Chic beat.

While he and the band appear to have brought polished 80s-influenced pop-rock up to date for a new audience, Matty is not a fan of modern technology at his gigs.

Not during one of his mid-song moments at least.

“Listen to me!” he cried.

“I want everyone in this field to notice something I do. I document every beautiful experience in my life. That’s how I validate it.

“So put your phones down! I’m not being patronising because I’m the worst for it. But I want us to connect as much as possible, as this show means so much to me.”

Towards the end of the show his dislike of modern technology surfaced once more, as he yelled about how “the internet is an echo chamber we can never get out of. We are [bad word]!”

4. End of an era

Image copyright
Getty Images

Referencing perhaps their best-loved and certainly longest-titled album from last year, the singer said the show would bring down the curtain on the second stage of their promised trilogy.

He confirmed that a new musical project is in the pipeline for next year.

And he did so in typically understated manner.

“We had an album called I Like It When You Sleep, for You Are So Beautiful yet So Unaware of It.

“That album became an era and tonight is the end of that era.

“But it’s the start of a new era… called Music for Cars.”

Or music for a field in this instance.

5. Corbyn chant

In between songs Mr Healy swigged from a big pint of coke (insert your own mixer), lit several ‘ciggies’ and at one point – like Thom Yorke at Glastonbury – led the crowd in a rendition of “Ohhhhh… Jeremy Corbyn” to the tune of The White Stripes’ Seven Nation Army.

“Sorry to any Tories out there,” he said.

“You’ve paid a lot of money to come here for the weekend and I’m here singing about Jeremy Corbyn.”

6. God gets it

Finally, and maybe the most ambitious attack of all was reserved for the Lord almighty.

“This next song is about Jesus Christ and God and the Holy Spirit – and all their ambiguity,” he declared.

“What an ambiguous bunch they were.”

Certainly nothing ambiguous about The 1975’s commanding performance.

After captivating a family-friendly Latitude on their debut headline slot, we shall have to wait until the next festival season and their new incarnation to see if they can mix it with the big boys and girls elsewhere.

Latitude festival will be headlined tonight by Mumford & Sons’ Gentlemen of the Road show and Fleet Foxes tomorrow.

The 1975’s full Latitude setlist:

1. Love Me

2. UGH!

3. Heat Out

4. A Change of Heart

5. The City

6. An Encounter

7. Robbers

8. Loving Someone

9. She’s American

10. Please Be Naked

11. 28

12. Somebody Else

13. You

14. fallingforyou

15. The Ballad of Me and My Brain

16. Girls

17. Sex

18. If I Believe You

19. Chocolate

20. The Sound


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